DRAFT PICKS: Round 1: #5 Round 2: #32
|18. JaVale McGee||16. Nick Young||18. Oleksiy Pecherov||No Selection|
|* Draft rights traded|
Offense, and plenty of it. With Arenas at the point, Butler at shooting guard and Jamison at either forward position, this team has more weapons than the Pentagon. Before Arenas' injury, the Wizards were a tough match for most teams: guard one, but get burned by the others. They haven't had that flexibility the last two seasons with Arenas tending to his tender knee.
The Wizards also have a lot of raw talent on the bench, specifically JaVale McGee, a 7-footer with athleticism to spare and Nick Young, the only Wizard to play in all 82 games in 2008-09.
Health and cohesion. Arenas' knee problems have become chronic. He's played in 15 games in the last two seasons. He appeared in two games at the end of last year to test his knee at NBA speed. Will he be ready for 2009-10? If he is the old Gilbert, the Wizards, as currently constructed, are a Playoffs team. If his knee just makes him old, the Wizards will have trouble -- as they did in 2008-09. But even if Arenas is good to go, the Wizards as a whole will need to adjust to new coach's Flip Saunders' system. That will more than likely take longer than one month of training camp.
Bad luck continues to strike the Wizards. They had a 17.6 percent chance to get the No. 1 overall pick, but managed to fall out of the top three and to No. 5, the lowest possible pick for them. Two days before the Draft, the Wizards decided to trade their pick to Minnesota for backcourt depth (Randy Foye) and 3-point shooting (Mike Miller).
The Wizards are stacked -- if everyone is healthy. In Arenas, Butler and Jamison, they have three All-Stars, they have a capable backup point guard in Young, a good, athletic young big in McGee and talent throughout the roster. The Wizards still need some bulk and have the No. 2 overall pick in the second round, so they may be able to steal a quality big.
For the talented Wizards, though, the No. 5 pick was gravy for an already talented squad. It proved to be key in helping them acquire some more depth should injuries again strike their superstars in 2009-10.